My Eep

I spent last week in San Francisco, attending DrupalCon. Like many geeks, I prefer to have a laptop with me at conferences, so I can take notes, check email and work on stuff if I need or want to.

My laptop is a rather lovely HP 6730b with a lot of RAM that does a whopping 1680 x 1050 as native resolution. Great for graphics and having lots of terminals open - less great for portability. HP also seems to have taken the 12 cell add-on battery for it off the market, so it only gives me about 2½ to 3 hours of run-time (with wi-fi enabled) as well.

Asus Eeepc 1005PAt DrupalCon I developed netbook envy, so upon arriving home I decided I needed something a lot more portable and with far better battery life.

I did a bit of research and found that all manufacturers offer virtually identically spec'd netbooks that contain an Atom N450, 1GB RAM, 250GB HDD and a 10.1" screen. The only point of difference seems to be the battery size, which ranges from 3 cell to 6 cell Li-ion.

A friend told me he'd just bought an Eeepc 1005P for just over $400, which is actually much cheaper than the competition. Sadly that was with a 10% discount campaign, which is no longer running. Still, the 1005P was at least $30 cheaper than the closest competitor and it does come with a 6 cell battery.

Flashing an HP 2140 with free software

When I flashed the Mini 2140 yesterday I used a Windows laptop to create a bootable flash drive with the BIOS utility and update on it.

I didn't really need to use a non-free operating system, as HP provide a tiny bootable ISO image with FreeDOS, but using that means wasting a CD-R. It's not that those are expensive, but they do end up in landfill.

Instead, I'd like to be able to simply use a USB key. I found some help on the FreeDOS wiki and I thought I'd document the steps I followed on Ubuntu.

HP 2140 Linux Oops

Kattekrab has been lusting after a netbook for ages. Her old laptop, a G4 iBook, just isn't cutting the mustard anymore and Ubuntu even dropped PPC support some time ago. It runs Debian just fine, but even then because it's PPC there are issues with Java and there is no Flash or Acrobat*.

HP 2140Last weekend we decided to put our free** Rudd money into the economy and went shopping.

Ever since my Dell disintegrated in the early naughties I've had HP laptops and loved them.  During 2008 I used a small HP laptop that was donated for (the 2009 team used and loved it last year). Thank you HP!